Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thankful

I'm thankful for all my models, especially ones such as Mindee (left) and Cierra.


Today, in the United States, is Thanksgiving - a day to be thankful for the things you have in life. Since Soles of Silk is in its 12th year now, there are a lot of things that I am thankful for here in the online foot fetish community. I thought this month's column would be the perfect chance to go into all those things I am thankful for. I decided to hold off and post it today for the full effect.

Site Models
Without all the ladies who have shown me their feet over the years, Soles of Silk would have never opened, let alone be entering its 13th year in 2017. A total of 93 models to date have shown off their soles and toes, most of them doing so on multiple occasions. And while not all of those 93 models still currently shoot, I thank each and every one of them for what they have done.

Site Members
Obviously a pay site cannot exist without members. To all of you have spent your hard earned money for a membership at any point over the last 13 years, I say thank you! It doesn't matter if you've been with me from the start, have had off/on memberships, or are even a brand new member - each and every one of you have helped keep this all possible. This is why I try my hardest to reward free membership time with random contests, like the recently completed, Mindeemania Contest

Site Fans
Although many of the members, if not all of them, could be considered fans, I'm listing this separate for a reason. I know many people enjoy Soles of Silk and its models, but do not have a membership for whatever reason. Regardless, I still enjoy hearing the feedback and having conversations with all of you. So many people have sung the praises of Soles of Silk and/or the models on social media, or the Wu's Feet Links Forum over the years, and I really do appreciate that. This is also why I like to run the contests. Sometimes people who cannot afford to be a member due to factors in life can win some time to enjoy all that Soles of Silk has to offer. It's just another way for me to show some appreciation.

Site Host - BHE
When I launched Soles of Silk in 2004, I went with BHE as a host. So many sites I followed, or was friends with during the time of my prior free sites, were hosted by BHE. I reached out to them and they've been nothing but helpful and supportive from the start. I know I could probably host elsewhere and maybe have a few extra abilities I don't currently have access to, but the ease in which BHE works has been valuable to me. In addition, they're always there when I have a question and have supported me with whatever I wanted to do. This leads right into the next item.

Getting to interview others in the community for Wu's Feet Links has been great.

Wu & Wu's Feet Links
Without Wu and Wu's Feet Links, Soles of Silk would not be where it is today. I think most webmasters who started between the early 2000's - Wu's passing will say the same thing. Wu is probably the nicest, most down to earth, drama free person you would have ever met online. He loved my work and his feedback always made me feel good about what I do. Whenever he complimented one of my models, which was a regular occurrence, I couldn't wait to pass that praise onto the girls. I really made their day!

When he passed away a few years ago, I reached out to BHE with a small game plan on ways to keep his site going. I wanted to keep his vision, his baby, if you will, going as best as we could without him at the helm. And while I'm not always happy with how things turn out, it's only because I want what's best for this site. I'd seriously give it all up, however, to have him back. Since that can't happen, however, I am thankful for all of you who have helped me with these columns, the interviews on the Wu's Feet Links Interviews Blog, with feature model submissions, and in the forum. You've helped make some added work on my plate a little bit easier. Thank you for all the compliments and offers of assistance over these last few years.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Wasted Time & Wasted Days

Alice has been nothing but dependable from the first time I shot with her in 2015.


Typically I am not one to put drama out online. I've gotten on my own friends and relatives who participate in it on places such as Facebook, but today I need to climb onto a soapbox. I, however, will not be naming names here. I'm, instead, here to vent about a topic that is near and dear to many photographers out there. That topic is models who waste your time and waste your open days.

Now, I will be totally up front and say that I generally do not shoot what most consider to be "foot fetish models." I mostly stick to friends and friends of those friends. I still, however, face that same fate as so many of my peers. And just like those peers, it annoys the hell out of me. This weekend among them.

Again, I will not be naming any names, but today I was set to shoot a friend of mine who has not shot with me since 2013. Her debut was halfway through 2012 and in that short span of time, became one of the most talked about, most beloved models on Soles of Silk. And best of all, she was simply put, a doll. 

This model and I were good friends, first and foremost. Best of all, she loved modeling for the site. Then one day, she just stopped replying to me for shoots. We had plans to do some really interesting ideas too. To make matters even worse, I had given her a couple hundred dollars worth of outfits and accessories I wanted her to wear in those planned sets. When she stopped replying to me and then ultimately no showed that shoot date, I was perplexed. I kept trying to reach out to her, but nothing.

As the months went by I tried to reach out to her, even if it was just to get the outfits back. If something had changed in her life to where she didn't want to model anymore, that is okay. Just be honest with me and give me those items back. I could always have someone else wear them. Still, nothing.

This got to the point where I just stopped trying - until recently. I decided to see if I could reach out to her a few years later and much to my surprise, she got back to me. We made small talk and decided to get together and shoot. She was looking forward to it, so it seemed, and I was so excited to be having this model back on the site. Then today's shoot... well, cancellation.

This model told me she'd be able to shoot after class on Monday. I told her I would leave the day open and look for some spots around her way. I wanted to try to get in several sets because she has been away for so long. She said that sounded great and that was the plan.

Well, in the days leading up to today's shoot I didn't get an answer from her when I sent her texts. In the back of my mind I figured this would happen, but I had kept my fingers crossed. It wasn't until today, about an hour or so before we were scheduled to shoot, that I got any kind of reply from her. In it, she stated that she hasn't paid attention to her phone lately, she's super swamped with class and work, and her feet weren't in any condition to shoot. She then asked if I could do next Monday instead.

Really?

There was part of me who wanted to just say no and I'm not bothering with you anymore. All she would have had to do is tell me this in the days leading up to the shoot. I would have been fine if she said that things are getting a little busy for her and had asked to postpone to a later date. Just give me some advanced notice! But an hour before we were supposed to shoot? C'mon!!!

So now, here I am, sitting at my computer, writing this, and asking her what time slot she has open next Monday. I have some plans with friends that I had made over a month ago to head out to a haunted house and hayride. I am not going to cancel on them to do this shoot because that's not who I am. But should I even consider shooting her to begin with?

Now that Monday was wasted, a day in the mid-70's by the way, that makes two straight days that I had shoots planned that didn't happen. Yup, someone else cancelled on me yesterday. 

Yesterday's planned shoot was with a new model. Since she's new, and I don't really know her yet, I'm giving her the benefit of the doubt. She mentioned some health reasons, which are good reasons to miss a shoot. I just wished she would have reached out to me about it earlier instead of me learning the night before when I messaged her.

So that was my weekend. Two different models, two different shoots not done. What makes this so much more annoying is I only have two days a week to shoot, typically. I pencil in models in advance on my calendar and try to maximize my month. When a model no shows me, or cancels last minute, it leaves me without a shoot. All these models would have to do it tell me a few days in advance and I could try to see if someone else is open. I constantly have friends asking me if I'm open to shoot, so I could always ask them if they're still open. I just need some advance notice. Too many of the people I shoot have kids, families, and work jobs on the days that I'm open. They usually make time to shoot with me, so I can't ask the day of if they're open to shoot. That rarely works.

Over the years this sort of thing has happened to me more times than I care to discuss. I only bring up this weekend because of the beautiful weather and my sheer excitement of a popular model return and a brand new model now wasted. So, if you happen to be a foot model reading this, please keep this in mind the next time there is a reason why you can't shoot. Even if that reason is legit, just try your best to be considerate of the photographer who oftentimes, made his/her schedule open just to spend time to work with you. I'm sure some of my peers are less understanding and might even cease working with you because of it.

To end on a positive note, I'm just glad I have friends/models such as Alice (above) and Mindee and Kelsey (both below) who always keep their plans and go far and beyond anything I ask of them. I put their photos here just to give props to a handful of my models who don't waste my time. I would gladly shoot these three each and every week, if I had the time. To you ladies, I say thank you!

Mindee (left) & Kelsey have long been dependable when it comes to keeping plans.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Hall of Fame ALMOST Finished

The image that tops off Sexy Lexi's all new Hall of Fame page.



Last month I came clean about how I dropped the ball with the Wu's Feet Links Hall of Fame (WFLHoF) after the 2015 class had been selected and announced. Well, I've been getting things done since then and am close to finalizing the new Wu's Feet Links Hall of Fame Blog. While not yet finished, I have published most of the members' pages for people to check out, enjoy, and critique. Those inductees include the following:

If you go through those inductee's pages you will be able to see a handful of things. I didn't want these pages just to have the person's name and hall of fame class. Even on Wu's older page he listed a couple of other items including links to their site and a couple of photos. This is what I have decided to go with on each page:

Name & Hall of Fame Class
This one is basic and doesn't really need to be mentioned, but each inductee's page is topped off with a large image and the person's name and year inducted. You'll also be able to see each class by year on the right side in the blog's archive. Luckily for me, Wu listed when he inducted his past members and I was able to backdate these entries to reflect that.

Basic Bio & Info.
With one exception so far (Wu), here is where you can find some basic information about the foot model you're browsing. Right now I have decided to include things such as shoe size, favorite types of shoes, whether her feet are ticklish, favorite foot fetish activities, and other fetish activities they're known for. To gather this information I used things such as past interviews, the model's sites, feature sets, and just common knowledge I have of these women.

Where things will be lacking, as it is with Wu's, is if a male producer or photographer is inducted. I guess it can be adapted to fit and other information can be placed. I will tackle that obstacle when it arrives. Sadly, however, the only thing I could really put for Wu is that he founded Wu's Feet Links. If you have any suggestions of other information that can be placed here on his, I'm all for it.

Online
Here you can find links to these models/producers sites, clip stores, social media accounts, and email addresses. In the case of some of the older inductees, I listed their site name, but put a "(defunct)" after it. I saw no point in linking to URL's that are no longer active, but I thought their former site names deserved to be mentioned.

In addition to these items, I thought it would be great to list any Wu's Feet Links related items such as feature galleries and interviews. For example, Erotic Nikki has both a 2003 Fan Interview and a more recent, 2015 Interview.

Sample Gallery
I knew all along I wanted to include some sample photos on each page. Again, Wu is a little left out here since he didn't star in any work, nor did he take photos himself. Since he just ran one amazing site, I didn't know what to do here for him. With the models, however, I obviously just found photos of them online and made a gallery for each. But not for everyone... yet!

I say "yet" because I am at a loss for finding a handful of good photos for some of these models. This is the biggest reason why a few inductees pages are not yet online. If anyone has some older photo archives of the following people, could you please share them with me?
  • Bellecita (c/o 2015)
  • Devonne (c/o 2003)
  • Genie (c/o 2002)
  • Naia (c/o 2000)
  • Lil Redhead (c/o 2000)
I do have some of both Bellecita and Genie, but they're from galleries contributed to Soles of Silk and I wanted to feature images from numerous sets, if possible. I can pluck out a couple from my site, however. 

If you have any larger, high resolution images, of any of those listed above, please get in touch with me. I'd like to get some variety on these ladies pages. And I do realize that the majority of these inductees weren't posting in the modern era of HD and larger file sizes, if you will. I'm just trying to avoid images so small they're not really worth posting. So whatever you have, please let me know.



I also made sure to download the old Hall of Fame photos Wu had on his original page. I haven't included them, but am thinking that maybe I should? Perhaps within the gallery section, or in it's own little section. What do you think? It is only two images for each inductee, like the ones of Lil Redhead above.

Words From Peers & Fans
This section has some praise for each inductee from people in the online foot fetish community. It includes other webmasters, producers, and Wu's Feet Links Forum members. I put out a request for people to assist me with this and a number of people came through. It's not too late, if you'd like to toss out a few words for any of the inductees. I'll take them for another month or so.

So that's where I currently sit. I know this blog came a few days late again, but I wanted to touch base with everyone and give a progress report. As I said above, I'm looking for ideas, contributions, and especially photos. So get in touch with me if any of this is something you can assist with.